1409 Playbill Café brings down the curtain on hunger with a highly eclectic menu of American and international edibles. Begin your mouth-powered exploration with the Mediterranean tapas for two, a collection of hummus, fried eggplant, pita bread, and Egyptian fava beans ($12.90), which can be stacked into the shape of pyramids to attract nearby sphinxes. Eight-ounce burgers served on grilled pita bread ($7.99) promote carnivorous creativity with a choice of 12 extras, including gravy, sauerkraut, jalapeños, and feta cheese ($1.25 each). Floravores can tackle grape leaves ($4.99) packed with the power of rice, kalamata olives, and pepperoncinis, as well as the spinach quesadilla ($6.50) and a leafy lineup of veggie salads. A 16-ounce pork chop and its complement of garlic mashed potatoes ($16.99) take down even the amplest of appetites, and the shrimp and crab pasta ($15.99) unites the sea's greatest crustaceanary powers to rule taste buds in a benevolent flavor kingdom.
Café Promenade, lauded by the Washington Post as one of the area's best afternoon tea spots, brings afternoon tea stateside. Quaffers choose from among 10 loose-leaf teas, ranging from the sweet Darjeeling Choice Estate to a vegetal Sencha as the sophisticated wait staff serves guests bite-size sandwiches, such as roasted eggplant on focaccia and crab salad on wheat toast. Sate sweet teeth on a bevy of desserts, including chocolate éclairs, raisin scones, and banana-nut bread. With The Mayflower Royal Tea, teatime ends with two bubbly glasses of Mumm Cuvee Chef du Caves.
From asiago cheese to orange cranberry, Bethesda Bagels has a flavor for every bagel eater to pair with spreads such as chive or lox cream cheese. The handmade bagels can be ordered one delicious bagel or mini bagel at a time or by the baker’s dozen. Along with the namesake menu item, Bethesda Bagels also serves all-day breakfast, plus overstuffed sandwiches, pizzas, and other snacks, including fancy cookies and their more casually dressed cousin, the muffin.
South Block Smoothie & Wrap Co. draws from a lengthy menu of flavors to blend a wide assortment of fresh, vitamin-packed fruits and juices. Organic açai berries swim with mango and strawberries in the Amazon Smoothie’s pool of passion-o-guava juice, and the Bluenana Chill fuses together the rich nutrients and fashionable color schemes of bananas, blueberries, and non-fat raspberry sorbet. Soymilk and non-fat vanilla frozen yogurt perform their best hula dances to impress chocolate-tinged Hawaiian coffee in the Kona Mocha. A diverse mix of health-enhancing additions come swirled into booster smoothies such as the Peanut Blast, an amalgamation of bananas and peanut butter with an extra protein kick from 10 grams of whey or soy. Brand new, South Block scoops its nutrient-rich nectars from within a sleek, glass-fronted corner storefront.
Maui Wowi enlivens parties and events with Hawaiian-themed party rentals and treats including frosty fruit smoothies, coffee drinks both hot and cold, and snacks. Guests can borrow one of its thatched-roof tiki bars which conveniently include setup and breakdown. For independently wealthy third-graders and others unable to bartend themselves, the company offers bartending service from Hawaiian-shirt-clad specialists. They can mix drinks for every audience, including kona coffee, cappuccinos, and frozen coffee drinks, as well as fresh-fruit smoothies with or without alcohol in flavors such as piña colada, mango orange, and strawberry-banana daiquiri. All drinks, like the daughters of the Beach Boys, come with Hawaiian parasols.
Smoothie King smoothies combine fresh fruit, natural juices, and special nutritional enhancers into more than 90 flavors (you can customize, add, and subtract the extras) of icy delight, all of which focus on achieving one of seven nutritional goals. Try an antioxidant-rich Pomegranate Punch with pomegranate, bananas, blueberries, apple juice, soy protein, and Turbinado sweetener to stay healthy. Weight-conscious en-smuthiasts can trim down and float away with the Celestial Cherry High, packed with bananas, black cherry, papaya, Turbinado, and honey, and unpacked with fat. You can also customize any smoothie by adding enhancers or “make it skinny” by cutting out the honey and Turbinado.
Kolache Kreations adapts generations-old eastern European recipes to bake up fresh, circular pastry bundles loaded with sweet and savory fillings complemented by a menu of coffee drinks and more. Kolache's Old World wizards start with slightly sweet dough and tuck the tender foundation around scrumptious stuffings of fresh fruit, meats, cheeses, or an infinite series of incrementally smaller kolaches.